Regular class cutters will be waking up next week to the voices of former NBA superstar Magic Johson, Outkast's rapper Big Boi and performer Trey Songz. And when truants check their e-mail, they may also find messages reminding them to go to school.
The anti-truancy campaign is the latest effort by the city to entice the more than 6,000 chronically absent students to quit slacking and go to school. The messages will be sent to students who have missed 10 or more days so far this school year.
The city is hoping this pilot project will be expanded to reach 250,000 students. Right now, the city is focusing on elementary and middle school students.
"Get up out of bed, in to school," implores Olympic medal winning and 5-time NBA champion Johnson. "Try hard, do well. School got me to where I am today. So be there every single day and of course, give it your best shot."
The program, knowns as The WakeUp! NYC, is not all negative. The city will also be making “good news” calls congratulating students for strong or improved attendance.
Musician Trey Songz once sang, "If I Was In Your Dream Why Would You Wanna Wake Up?" is now telling kids, "If you're a student, get your butt to school."
Listen to Magic Johnson's PSA:
Listen to Trey Songz's PSA: